Android NFC Compatibility: The Definitive Guide
When it comes to NFC capabilities, Android have been slightly ahead of the game, with NFC available on Android devices since 2012. As the number of Android smartphones has exploded in recent years, we’ve broken it down so you can keep track of which are NFC-enabled.
NFC has three modes of operation.
- Card emulation. Where your phone acts as a credit card to make payments. Also known as Android Pay.
- NFC read/write functionality. Where NFC-enabled devices can interact with non-powered NFC enabled objects.
- Peer-to-Peer (P2P). Where you can file share between two powered NFC-enabled devices. Also known as Android Beam in android devices.
In 2016 Google introduced NFC to their Pixel phones.
All Samsung smart phones have supported NFC and Android Beam from 2012-2014. From 2015 Samsung pay was also included on all devices.
Since 2017 all Huawei smartphone models have been equipped with NFC capabilities, Android Pay and Android Beam.
There’s a slightly more complex history between Xiaomi and NFC - depending on the product line and the year, NFC capabilities are either included or omitted entirely.
One Plus introduced NFC and both Android Pay and Beam in 2014. However little usage led them to discontinue the capabilities in 2015. As of 2018 however, NFC capabilities have been re-introduced into all of their models.
Motorola has another slightly complex history of NFC. Only the Moto X4 has all NFC capabilities. Other models have a mixture of some or none at all depending on region.
Since 2014, all of LG’s smartphone models have included NFC chips, Android Pay and Android Beam. One notable exception (the Q6, 2017), was due to it being region specific.
Essentials 2017 PH-1 comes with all NFC capabilities.
Depending on the year and region, Nokia has a mixture of models carrying NFC and not.
All Sony smartphones, 2017-2018, support all NFC capabilities.
Most HTC smartphones have been equipped with NFC since 2015. Again, any exceptions are down to region.
As you can clearly see, while NFC capabilities do vary between manufacturers, it is becoming an integral component of Android smartphones. In the future, NFC looks likely to be across the board, giving users greater utility of their mobile devices.